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Intelligence Applied Emerging markets
Intelligence AppliedShare this
As the second largest economy in
Southeast Asia, Thai...
Intelligence AppliedShare this
Consumers in Thailand are more open to experimenting with
new products – more so than many ...
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Get ready for a resurgent Thailand

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Consumer confidence is rebounding in Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy. We’ve got the essential strategies for brands looking to align themselves with a positive national mood.

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Get ready for a resurgent Thailand

  1. 1. Intelligence Applied Emerging markets Intelligence AppliedShare this As the second largest economy in Southeast Asia, Thailand is a tempting market for brand expansion. Although the country was rocked by political instability and highly publicised protests in 2014, consumer confidence has been on the rise since the end of the military coup. With purchasing power in Thailand showing the potential to increase in 2015 in line with economic growth, there will be opportunities for companies to make an entry into the market. Tapping into the zeitgeist to align brands with the national mood is one path that other businesses have successfully trodden. After some of the worst floods in Thailand in 2011, Coca-Cola set upon galvanising the population through a feel-good campaign. Coke wanted to return the country to the ‘Land of Smiles’ and initiated a highly successful ‘Million Reasons to Believe in Thailand’ campaign. It was an online phenomenon, not only boosting national pride but teaching other brands about the power of tuning into the mood of the people. Tesco Lotus also released a video showing them helping to get essential food items to where people needed them most. The relationship between the brands and consumers in Thailand is increasingly reciprocal, with people expecting to ‘get something back’ for their loyalty. Many companies, particularly in the food and drink category, run promotions and competitions to keep these ‘reward addicts’ coming back. Ichitan, one of Thailand’s green tea giants, runs creative out-of-store promotional campaigns, with prizes up-for-grabs including the iPhone 6, a Porsche, a free holiday and 1 million baht – the lucky winner will find the prize written under the cap of the bottle. The company now has over three million followers on Facebook so eager customers can keep their eyes out for the next campaign. Watsons, which owns hundreds of pharmacies across the country, opted for comedy with a viral TV advert that shows a man’s transformation into a beautiful women using Watsons’ make-up products. Challenger brands must capitalise on post-protest Thailand
  2. 2. Intelligence AppliedShare this Consumers in Thailand are more open to experimenting with new products – more so than many of their neighbours in Asia. Western brands will need to do their homework to compete with local players. Although Western brands enjoyed a monopoly of the Thai market 10 or 15 years ago, there has been a major shift that has seen Asian brands from nearby countries taking a much greater share. For example, a surge in popularity of Korean TV shows and pop music has helped to inspire affinity with its Korean brands in Thailand. Looking into more detail at different sectors, there is clearly a major opportunity in the health and beauty sector as it draws interest from consumers of all ages. Male grooming needs are expected to increase in the future – there is potential in this area for facial and body care as well as cosmetics for men, with the main areas of interest being acne control, whitening and anti- aging. Interest in technology and new gadgets is high in a country where people are constantly seeking new information sources. Thailand is a highly mobile-centric market; up to 80% of people in Thailand own mobiles and 66% of online consumers ‘screen stack’ – use multiple devices at the same time. This is one the highest figures in Asia, behind only Hong Kong and Japan.* It’s clear that Thailand is ripe for brands looking for expansion in Southeast Asia. Despite residual uncertainty as to how the political situation will evolve, the country’s population is maintaining a positive outlook. With confidence returning and GDP expected to double, brands must mirror this positivity if they are to capitalise on the opportunities ahead of their competitors. *TNS Connected Life study 2014 Challenger brands must capitalise on post-protest Thailand About the author Dr Arpapat (Nokki) Boonrod is Managing Director of TNS Thailand. Nokki has more than 15 years of social and market research experience, both in Thailand and across Asia. For more information about TNS Thailand, contact arpapat.boonrod@tnsglobal.com About TNS TNS advises clients on specific growth strategies around new market entry, innovation, brand switching and stakeholder management, based on long-established expertise and market-leading solutions. With a presence in over 80 countries, TNS has more conversations with the world’s consumers than anyone else and understands individual human behaviours and attitudes across every cultural, economic and political region of the world. TNS is part of Kantar, the data investment management division of WPP and one of the world’s largest insight, information and consultancy groups. Please visit www.tnsglobal.com for more information. If you would like to talk to us about this report, please get in touch via enquiries@tnsglobal.com or on Twitter @tns_global

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